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Workers on site reconstruction, which took place from 1964-1975
Workers on site reconstruction, which took place over the years 1964-1975 Photo courtesy Ohio Historical Society

Fort Meigs State Memorial

This fort, built on a high bluff on the south side of the Maumee River overlooking the rapids, was the site of two important battles during the War of 1812. In the 1960s the Ohio Historical Society began a ten-year program of archaeological excavation, historic research, and architectural restoration to reconstruct the site as it was during the War of 1812. The project was completed in 1975 and officially dedicated in 1976. Today the Fort Meigs, which appears as it did during the first siege of April and May 1913, sits within a 66.2 acre park, and comprises seven blockhouses, of which three contain interpretive exhibits, five artillery batteries, the stockaded outer works, and a system of interior earthen mounds originally thrown up within the stock as protection from artillery rounds.

During the War of 1812, the commander of the forces within the region, William Henry Harrison, ordered his troops to build the stockade. The fort was designed by the Northwest Army's chief engineer, West Point-trained Captain Charles Gratiot. Harrison named the stockade Fort Meigs in honor of Ohio governor, Return Jonathan Meigs.

Harrison waited at the fort for more men and supplies to continue his offensive to repatriate Detroit, which had been captured by the British, and carry the war into Canada. British and Canadian troops, assisted by native allies, attacked the post twice in 1813, which the fort successfully withstood. Following the end of the war in 1815, the military abandoned the post. Fort Meig is one of about 60 sites operated throughout the state to commemorate Ohio's historic, natural and archaeological heritage. It is the site of military re-enactments, lectures, presentations, and other programs intended to preserve and interpret the region's heritage.

Project documentation includes a short report and 20 slides.

Originally submitted by: Marcy Kaptur, Representative (9th District).

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The Local Legacies project provides a "snapshot" of American Culture as it was expressed in spring of 2000. Consequently, it is not being updated with new or revised information with the exception of "Related Website" links.

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